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      Nurturing people in the image of God since 1868.                                                                          POB 397/520 Dry Creek Rd./Smithville, TN

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Making Days Count

Erma Bombeck reminded us of the need to make today count when she said, "Seize the moment. Remember all those women on the Titanic who waved off the dessert cart." There are times when we need to wave off the dessert cart and count the calories. But everyday we live there are moments just dying to be seized: a child who needs you to wipe away a tear; a teen who needs a hug; a husband or wife who needs to hear "I love you"; a struggling co-worker who just needs to know someone cares; a senior or shut-in who needs a call or even a visit that shows they still matter to someone. In a clockeyed, hurry-up world that always lives at a hectic pace, we must be careful not to wave off the opportunities that come our way to glorify God and bless and help others as we go through life.

An epitaph seen on one tombstone reminds us it is easy to count days instead of making days count: "DIED - AGE 30. BURIED - AGE 60. Jesus was one who made every day count up until His very last day. He didn't live a very long life, but if anyone ever seized the moments day in and day out, it was the Son of God! Mark 1: 16-39 records what appears to be a 24 hour slice out of His life. In those 24 hours we see Him calling disciples to follow Him (1: 16-20), worshiping and teaching in a synagogue on the Sabbath (1:21-28), healing and helping the bodies and souls of many (1:29-34), praying (1:35), and preaching (1:38-39). Follow Jesus through the gospels and you find Him moving toward the cross like a heat seeking missile. That cross (and the resurrection) served as the "grand finale," the culmination of all He came to do and accomplish for God and mankind. But along the way there was moment after moment when we see Him ministering to human need: healing the sick, giving sight to the blind and hearing to the deaf, casting out unclean spirits and demons, touching the untouchable lepers, gathering little children in His arms and blessing them, spending time with and saving sinners some considered to be unsaveable. Jesus was determined to do more than count the days leading up to the cross - He made the days count.

Montaigne said: "The value of a life lies not in the length of days, but in the use we make of them; a man may live long yet live little." William James noted, "The value of life is computed not by its duration but by its donation." We must strive to do more than live long on this earth - we must strive to live well. It is not enough to count the days. We must make the days count by seizing the moments they hold to serve God and other people. When we make our days count, we make our lives count, too.

Dan Gulley
Smithville church of Christ